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Vikings Host Military Veterans For Salute To Service

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- Attending a Vikings game at U.S. Bank Stadium is quite a unique experience.

It was especially memorable for military veterans Sunday, who attended the team's Salute to Service game.

There have been 99 years in Arthur Hermansen's life so far. And 100 yards on the field at U.S. Bank Stadium.

"It's great to be here, it's an awesome place," Hermansen said.

Arthur is watching the Vikings play the Detroit Lions with this son, Wayne.

"We were fans from the inception of the Vikings back in 61," Wayne said. "The last Viking game we had been to was out in Bloomington, at the old stadium, you know."

The father and son both served in the U.S. military. This is the Viking's Salute to Service game, which honors servicemen and women from all branches.

Arthur and Wayne are a few of the veterans watching the action from the Starkey Hearing suite.

"You know it's hard to even watch the game because they're so excited, and you're watching their expressions and listening to their stories so, so it's a lot of time listening and a little time watching the game," Starkey Hearing Technologies President Brandon Sawalich said.

The action on the field was just a few feet away, but one of the team's stars got even closer.

"Stefon Diggs, he's unfortunately not playing but he stopped by and said hello to everyone and that was very nice," Capt. Jim Kosmo said.

It was a Sunday to salute those who've served that won't soon be forgotten.

"It's just a great honor to be recognized for what little part I had in it, and to be to associated with other veterans who have given far more service than I have. We all gave our time but some gave more," Kosmo said.

"A lot of us guys in the service don't really need accolade and whatever, it's something we did and we're glad that we did it," Wayne said.

Every time the hashtag #SaluteToService is used through Nov. 19 -- the NFL will donate five dollars to a nonprofit that helps service members and their families.

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